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ERIC Number: EJ783943
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007
Reference Count: 25
The Necessity of Academic Accommodations for First-Year College Students with Learning Disabilities
Hadley, Wanda M.
Journal of College Admission, n195 p9-13 Spr 2007
The number of students with learning disabilities enrolling in colleges and universities is increasing each year. Affirming effectiveness of resources and programs meant to support students' integration into the campus community involves multilayered research, because the subjects must be self-advocating to get the full advantages the resources and programs provide. To test the development of these students, the researchers looked at the programs through students' success in three design vectors--developing competence, managing emotions, and developing autonomy. Arthur Chickering (1969), a psychosocial theorist who studied college student development at length and created these vectors, theorized that individual development involved the accomplishment of a series of developmental tasks and suggested that mastering these tasks was a process and specific conditions in the college environment influence that process. Because reading disabilities were reported to be the nature of the learning problem for the vast majority of the students with learning disabilities, students identified as having dyslexia or reading problems were selected for this study, which was conducted on a private, selective, coeducational, four-year college campus in the Midwest. Researchers used qualitative design to make interpretations about the individual student experiences, feelings, attitudes and perceptions (Finn, 1998). Students represented all four of the academic units on campus: Arts and Sciences, Business, Education, and Engineering. The students indicated that they found it necessary to continue using academic services in their transition from high school, and in accessing and integrating into the postsecondary educational environment. All the students reported feeling challenged by college writing expectations as compared to high school. To integrate into the institution, students sought support for their writing assignments by requesting extra time for tests, writing assistance and assistance from note-takers. As a group, the students were critical of the level of accommodations available in the college environment and reported feeling challenged to meet the academic expectations with such limited services.
Descriptors: Learning Disabilities, Academic Achievement, Academic Accommodations (Disabilities), College Students, Writing (Composition), Skill Development, Emotional Adjustment, Student Adjustment, Personal Autonomy, Individual Development, Dyslexia, Selective Admission, Student Attitudes, Services, Higher Education
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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